Gift packages ease students' exam worries
Twelfth-grade students from Jiading District are all psyched up for the upcoming gaokao after they received care packages.
For most Chinese students, China's national college entrance exam is a life-changing opportunity. This year's gaokao is just two weeks away, and there are inevitable bouts of anxiety and worry.
Shanghai Dream+ Youth Development & Exchange Center, abbreviated as Shanghai Dream+, was on hand to steady their nerves.
It joined with the China Children and Teenagers' Fund to launch a "Fighting Gaokao!" project to cheer up the students taking this year's gaokao, and is set to feature a series of events at schools in Shanghai, Yunnan and Guizhou.
Last Thursday, in the second event, it entered SISU Jiading Foreign Language Experimental Senior High School.
Chinese snack brands Qiaqia and Oishi, dairy giant Mengniu and stationery company M&G sent the school's gaokao candidates their best-selling products wrapped in gift packages. University students, local TV anchors, research institute academicians and project sponsors sent their best wishes via video.
Wang Qinzhi, executive vice chairman of Shanghai Dream+, showed a medal awarded by Shanghai government for his efforts in poverty alleviation.
He said poverty alleviation is not an easy task, neither is gaokao. But he had hung in there and reaped the rewards.
"I carry this medal with me to send you good luck," he said.
Psychological counselor Shen Zhifei offered tips on maintaining a calm and positive mental attitude toward the exam with humorous language and vivid examples. She finished her lecture to enthusiastic applause.
Student Yan An said she had not been doing very well in her studies but was inspired by Shen's lecture on how to relieve stress and anxiety through positive psychological cues.
"Shen mentioned that when I am under great pressure, I can say a word of encouragement or make an encouraging gesture to myself. I believe this kind of psychological hint can help me adjust actively and recover to the best state as soon as possible," Yan said.
When the event drew to a close, students wrote down their ideal schools and majors on a large whiteboard with the question: "What is your dream when gaokao is approaching?"
"I want to be an English teacher in the future. Through the physical and mental help from this project, I am more confident to realize my dream," said Huang Xuan, who hopes major in English pedagogy at Shanghai Normal University.
A highlight of recent projects is the 2021 "Young Voice, China Story" competition to encourage students to spread traditional Chinese culture in English and give foreigners a better understanding of China.
"We have been working on holding public welfare activities in order to guide today's young students to establish a comprehensive and fascinating outlook of Chinese history, the Chinese nation and Chinese culture as well as build up our cultural confidence," Wang said.